There are those who understand everyone is sinful, regardless of their age. Yet some people think that children are pure and innocent. Unfortunately, my mother was never one of them, but to be honest she had good intuition and knew I was trouble. Here is a story I just remembered about those years.
I was about nine or ten years old, attended a Russian church in Kent (SGC), and my dad was one of those important guys in a suit that sat on stage. Because he was very prominent, I naturally figured that I ought to be prominent too and actually had a great deal of shame when I didn’t live up to those expectations. One Sunday morning, our beloved teacher announced that our next undertaking would be reading all of the New Testament (wheh, it wasn’t the OT). And her awesome way of really stimulating us kids to love and value the Bible was by telling us that we would get prized upon completion. My big brown eyes widened. Prizes! I was not third world poor, but being a kid living in America that wore Value Village clothes, I loved prizes!
Every week we would compare notes to see who was winning. Time really (I mean really) flew by, and out of nowhere a girl turned in her parent-signed Bible reading plan. She was done! (A girl? Better than me?!). I turned to the other smart kid in class, “Vlad, when are you done?” He informed me that he anticipated turning in his form next week. Later that day I read skimmed the book of Ephesians. I then told my dad that I was done and wanted him to sign my paper. He decided to test me. Ouch. I was afraid about his. His first and only question was, “what’s in the book of Ephesians?” This nine year old boy proceeds to give him a 3 minute lecture about husbands and wives (Eph 5, the only chapter I found ”interesting” and read). Paper signed.
Next week I turned it in. Got my litte present (I think it was a plastic box filled with candy). Everyone thought “Yuriy and Vlad, got second place, they are smart.” Not everyone or everything that looks good, is good.